Texas Education Board Wants Science Textbooks to Teach ‘Another Side’ of Evolution (VIDEO)

Barbara Cargill, who was Rick Perry’s choice to chair the Texas State Board of Education, criticized the curriculum used by several Texas schools called CSCOPE (which has been the target of various conspiracy theories) for not teaching students about “alternative” theories to evolution.

In a report by the Texas Freedom Network, Cargill was heard to say that book publishers and CSCOPE should teach “another side to the theory of evolution.”

“Our intent, as far as theories was to teach all sides of scientific explanations. But when I went on [to the CSCOPE website] last night, I couldn’t find anything that might be seen as another side to the theory of evolution. Every link, every lesson, everything, you know, was taught as ‘this is how the origin of life happened, this is how — this is what the fossil record proves,’ and all that’s fine, but that’s only one side.”

Since the scientific approach to evolution is fairly universal, the only “alternative theory” would be that of a religiously-based creationist approach — which brings in the question of Constitutionality and church-state separation.



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    February 7, 2013 at 7:50 am

    Evolution is based on factual, empirical observation. There is no other side. There is evolution, and there is nonsense.

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    Lynn Weyts

    February 7, 2013 at 8:24 am

    All that “proof”, but it’s “only one side”.
    THERE IS NO OTHER SIDE TO PROVEN FACTS, LADY! What YOU are talking about is called “theology” & does NOT have anything to do with EVOLUTION!
    It belongs in religious training at the CHURCH of your choice!

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    February 7, 2013 at 9:57 am

    I’m going to be a biology teacher, and let me tell you: I will not teach any other ‘side’. There isn’t any other side. There’s facts and evidence, and there is religious beliefs. Now if someone holds a belief, that is fine, but that doesn’t make it a legitimate scientific point of view worthy of being taught in public schools.

    Besides that, there is nothing to teach. There is nothing in Creationism that is worthy of being taught in a science class. IF they had some credible evidence, then yes. But they don’t. You can’t understand modern biology except in light of evolutionary theory. You simply can’t. And if students aren’t taught evolution, they are being done a great disservice for that reason.

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    Radioman KansaSitty

    February 7, 2013 at 10:51 am

    Texas is such a big state, and that woman is the best you can find to lead the state’s education board? That’s pretty pathetic.

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    Critical thinker

    February 7, 2013 at 11:42 am

    If they want to teach the biblical version in public schools, then its time to start taxing the church.

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    Megan Colleen Justus

    February 7, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    Well said.

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    February 7, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    To ETA: Evolution is not based on factual, read up, Einstein said, ‘Evolution is a theory and only a theory, there is no premise or truth evidence to connect human to any little creature from the sea, and who made the sea and the little creature.

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    February 7, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    Einstein wasn’t an evolutionary biologist, nor had 21st Century knowledge of things learned since he died…..

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    Thomas Showalter

    February 7, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    To all the non scientists out there a “theory” in science is the same as “fact” to a lay person. What a theory in scientific terms means basically is: with all the available information and all the studies (which can be re observed or re done) it is science fact. There are no facts associated with creationism just a totally unprovable belief. Belief is fine but to teach a belief is to teach a religion and if we are going to do that it should not be in science but in philosophy classes and I would add that if christian creationism is taught then we should also teach the creation related beliefs of buddhists, hindus, muslims, native americans, and all other “beliefs” out there.

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    February 7, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    Kitzmiller vs. Dover. This will be challenged in court and the Creationists will have their asses handed to them just like they did in the past, costing the school board thousands or even millions in the wasted effort.

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    Peter Marengo

    February 8, 2013 at 11:50 am

    I am a Christian and firmly believe that creationism should not be required to be taught in school science classes. The door swings both ways. Do these people want their churches to be required to teach evolution as well as creationism?

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    darwin the believer in god

    February 9, 2013 at 4:19 am

    where are the talking apes please?? why arent apes still evolving?? boy are we lucky that the sun was so randomly placed for heat and light??? where did life come from?? aliens, protein crystals?? sorry scientists, evolution is a fact as far as everything evolves for survival like losing tails and wings, but show me a talking ape and they YOU HAVE A FACT, GENIUS!??

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    darwin the believer in god

    February 9, 2013 at 4:24 am

    if you can teach a theory like evolution without showing me a talking ape then there should be some mention of THE THEORY OF INTELLIGENT DESIGN AS IT ONE OF MANY POSSIBILITIES REGARDING WHERE LIFE CAME FROM! planets colliding and forming perfect dna strands would be a million to one and then how lucky to have the sun close enough for survival?? its amazing how something so random could have created perfect lifeforms complete with reproductive systems, sight, ciruculatory systems, noses, etc. etc. now, show me that talking ape please??

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    Kelly Provorse

    February 15, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    Darwin’ Theory is the explanation of the way environment shapes a species & how one species gives rise to many from which one or more becomes dominate. The Theory of Intelligent
    design is the belief that a supernatural power is directing the evolution of a species but it still is evolution. The (God) part is Religion not science, & every Tom, Dick, & Pope, Has their own version. I for one do not want to hear your version in my kid’s school.

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    Alex Saldierna

    February 23, 2013 at 8:56 am

    Had to be Texas lol

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    March 18, 2013 at 1:14 am


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    March 18, 2013 at 1:22 am

    Only in Texas! Intelligent Design is a possibility regarding where life originated as much as the possibility we’ll find that talking ape you want to see. Leave your religious beliefs outside any school house doors please, ID is as much a science as any religious theory of the earth’s creation.

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    April 2, 2013 at 9:04 am

    A talking ape is a human. Please leave.

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    April 19, 2013 at 12:00 am

    How ignorant. Typical Christian nonsensical response.

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    April 19, 2013 at 12:03 am

    What are you trying to communicate? You have NO idea what you are talking about…. We ARE primates, and their are BILLIONS of suns in the Universe, every hear of the law of probability? Probably not, why even waste time with the willfully ignorant.

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    April 19, 2013 at 12:05 am

    The courts have decided that INTELLIGENT DESIGN is NOT a viable theory, you can dress up creationism with whatever words you want but it is still NOT A SCIENCE. You really are ingnorant.

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    April 19, 2013 at 8:34 pm

    What they should teach is the evolution of religion. It’s available. The initial need for a spiritual leader, the influences from the thinking of surrounding tribes, the sudden flashes of thought that were given credence and the need to have stories that competed with the stories of the neighbours. You got a virgin birth….we had one first! Understanding takes nothing from the importance of the spiritual guidance of the person who holds your group together.

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    April 25, 2013 at 8:05 am

    Since you likely will never Google it, let me just say that you clearly have no idea of the anthropic principle…

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    May 3, 2013 at 7:22 am

    How about this right wing religious nuts?
    How about you let us in secular schools teach science and not theology, and…
    We will ALLOW you to even HAVE schools in this country.
    We should shut down every religious school that doesn’t teach scientific fact instead of their religious dogma. How would that be?
    See, we can be coercive jerks too, shoving our science where it doesn’t belong.
    Your religion is your own affair.
    Try to force it on my kid, and I will do whatever I can to shut down your church school, and your church tax exempt status with it.

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    Candide Scaramouche (@Scaramouchetoo)

    May 8, 2013 at 12:46 am

    There’s also the slight issue that she, like many moro…uh…alternatively brained…people don’t know the difference between evolution and abiogenesis. Evolution has frick all to do with the *origin* of life. It doesn’t threaten your precious little fable!

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    Candide Scaramouche (@Scaramouchetoo)

    May 8, 2013 at 1:00 am

    I cannot find a single source with Einstein saying anything remotely close to your alleged quote. However I *did* find this quote by Einstein demonstrating his belief in Evolution: “Often in evolutionary processes a species must adapt to new conditions in order to survive. Today the atomic bomb has altered profoundly the nature of the world as we knew it, and the human race consequently finds itself in a new habitat to which it must adapt its thinking.” –Einstein, 1946

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    Candide Scaramouche (@Scaramouchetoo)

    May 8, 2013 at 1:07 am

    I can’t verify a talking ape but if you get a mirror I can show you a typing ape…but not a terribly bright one. You really seem to lack even the most basic understanding of science, critical thinking, and evidence-based reasoning. Without taking you apart word-by-word, the odds of life forming are faaaaaaar smaller than “a million to one.” The theory of Evolution says NOTHING about “where life came from.” That’s in a separate field called “abiogenesis” though cosmology also has something to say as far as the origin of the universe. Evolution? Puh-lease. I personally evolved mutated e.coli into an anti-biotic resistant form when I was 14 and taking science enrichment courses in biochemistry.

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    Steve M (@sdmestayer)

    May 8, 2013 at 6:39 am

    Want to see a talking ape….look in the mirror dude. You shave a talking apes face every morning.

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    Fed Up

    May 9, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    I’m a wiccan. I believe in the pantheistic host of natural spirits. When the winds move, it is because the Great Earth Mother wills it. If global temperatures are rising, it is because the great salamander spirit at the heart of the world is turning.

    I want my children to learn the spiritual truth of the world and right now they are being indoctrinated with all the science surrounding climate change. I want a different theory espoused, one that says that climate change is just a theory and that there is insignificant evidence to prove that the great Salamander spirit is not causing the global rise in temperatures.

    Of course, the above is ridiculous (and not at all representative of the Wiccan religion), but this is how rational people view these movements to have creationism taught in the classroom. The only difference between real Christians and my hypothetical Wiccan…there are more Christians.

    These are dark times in our country as people who cling to myths and fairy tales attempt to drag us all back into the dark ages. I hope we survive this madness and come to the point where we can move on towards advancing to a factual and more complete knowledge of our natural world.

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    Fed Up

    May 9, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    “planets colliding and forming perfect dna strands would be a million to one and then how lucky to have the sun close enough for survival??”

    You misrepresent the odds by saying it’s a million to one. The problem is that shortly after the big bang, the Universe expanded at near or constant with the speed of light in all directions, so your system is infinite. Further, the placement of the earth relative to the sun isn’t that much of a random chance event. Stars the size of our sun are actually not rare in the universe. Those stars create huge gravity wells which attract passing matter and matter left over from the area in which the star was born. That matter, over time, coalesces into orbital bodies…this is also not rare and frequently observed. The fact that our planet formed in the Goldilocks zone is simply a function of the planet’s mass. As for life, forming on earth, we also know that that shouldn’t be very rare. when you break down amino acids (the building blocks of protein and thus DNA), they are composed of the same type of matter which makes up the planet Jupiter, the Sun, and other celestial bodies. The fundamental building blocks are the same, it’s just that the organization is a bit more complex when you get into evaluating biological compounds. Anyway…we know that life doesn’t have to exist only in the circumstances under which humans evolved. Bacteria and simple life forms have been found living on superheated vents feeding on methane gas in the ocean. Human DNA could never survive such an environment. Neither could human DNA survive for (potentially) thousands of years in super cooled environments as the evidence seems to suggest some forms of bacteria can. So, even on this planet, we have evidence that life forms under circumstances which the biological compounds of our body would find intolerable. Life isn’t some random chance event, in fact all the scientific data points to the conclusion that life in our universe should be pretty robust and should have begun forming and evolving shortly after the universe cooled to the point where atoms could maintain the strong (and weak) nuclear forces keeping them together.

    So, from the limited perspective of our solar system, life appears to a random, chance event thus evoking the need for a creator in order to eliminate the innate human distaste for randomness. However, the problem with that is that the universe is infinitely large and even if the chances of life evolving in any environment are a million to one, the size of the universe provides so many opportunities to express that miniscule chance that it is more likely than not that the universe is actually teeming with various life and life forms.

    As for the talking ape…I guess the assumption is that if evolution occurs across all species and if humans are the evolved derivative of a group of hominids, then the other hominid sub groups should have evolved at the same rate and thus talking apes? If this is your assumption, you fundamentally misunderstand the principles of evolution. You assume that evolution of hominids has been and is now driven towards creating creatures with ever more human characteristics. The problem is that evolution doesn’t work that way. Evolution is a mess of genetic mutations, many of which are actually a disadvantage to the evolved subjects resulting in their deaths. There is a good deal of evidence that Homo Sapien evolved parallel to other species of humanistic hominids and competed in the same environment with them approximately 400,000 to 250,000 years ago. If you were alive then, you would be able to see your talking ape. However, due to changes in the environment and the intrinsic value that Homo sapiens larger brains provided them with, they were able to survive the elements with greater frequency than other hominid variants and probably even hunted their own genetic cousins for food and clothing.
    The great apes you see now evolved to the state that they currently inhabit because this state was selected for in nature and provided them with enough advantage to survive with greater frequency that their competitors in the natural arena. They don’t “talk” because their methods of communication have proved sufficient for survival. That’s not to say that they couldn’t ever evolve vocal cords in order to talk, but it also doesn’t mean that their ability to experience and communicate a wide variety of emotions is non-existent. Gorillas and chimps are can learn sign language and communicate their emotions, needs, and desires to human counterparts. Maybe they aren’t “speaking” but they aren’t mute, dumb lower mammals either. And, when female gorillas and chimps are taught sign language, sometimes an amazing thing occurs…they teach that same language to their offspring and then use the language to communicate. Is this evolution or simply learned behavior? If nature were to select for such behavior in the wild and primate sign language were to become a favored expressed trait…then you could very well see apes evolve into using their very own form of nonverbal, but complex and specific communication.

  31. Avatar

    John Baker

    May 20, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    I call bullshit on that so-called quote, Skippy. In the first place, no scientist would ever use the phrase “only a theory.” Anyone who does proves only that they don’t have a clue what a theory is as the term is used in science. In the second, Einstein was an agnostic. He didn’t believe in divine creation. Try again.

    If I had a dollar for every made-up “Einstein quote” Christians toss out to “prove” their imaginary friend isn’t imaginary, I’d be a wealthy man.

  32. Avatar

    John Baker

    May 20, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    Did your mother raise a moron, or are you a self made man? Humans *are* apes, you gibbering imbecile. And for your information, we, and every other life form on the planet, including our fellow apes *are* still evolving.

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    Marion Nelson

    May 22, 2013 at 3:53 am

    Sorry but after an hour of google and other searches I find NO evidence that Einstein said any such thing; must be another one of those repugnican “cause I said so” quotes that have become so common of late.

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    May 22, 2013 at 5:31 pm

    Fed up, you’re completely and utterly correct! “darwin the believer in god” simply does not understand or will now allow himself to try understand how evolution works. Fed up, keep up the good work!

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    May 22, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    Yes, Lebowski, Yes! Let ’em have it! I love your argument(s)! Short and exactly right! The right wing religious creationism nuts can never understand why it’s so important to separate church and state. As you stated so well, we can use their logic on them. Get and keep religion out of my public schools!

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    Dennis Rozier

    May 25, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Not to mention in the world of science, it’s standard practice to try to disprove a theory, not prove it to be true. I don’t believe Einstein said that either.

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    Royals Sin City JournalRoyal

    May 29, 2013 at 2:53 am

    Vic you are committing one of the most basic logical fallacies ..Darwins theories are based on observations..There is a very good Time Life book on the theory made for younger readers you can read to understand how that came about. The HMS Beagle.the time he spent on those islands etc etc and the decades of scientific evidence that establish it as fact…. I read when I was 9 or 10…When was that.well Nixon was still office …yes Evolution is a theory but the ability of natural selection to alter species is not. Genetic mutation is not a theory it is science.The fossils of early humans discovered were not Hobbits they were our ancestors…. If you want to teach creationism …fund a theology class and call it theology

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  40. Avatar


    June 12, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Ummmm….what? You need to see a talking ape? go look in the mirror! That’s right, now you’ve seen a talking ape, are we cool?

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    W. Kritzbeng

    June 15, 2013 at 11:21 am

    This woman is a fool, or probably just a zealot. There aren’t ‘sides’ in science. There may be competing hypotheses, and there’s certainly incomplete knowledge all over the place, but it takes the non-science community to create a ‘side.’

    Consequently, there is no other side to evolution, and pretending that things like intelligent design or creationism — which are utterly unscientific — should be taught as ‘other sides’ is the height of idiocy.

    And she’s supposedly a biology teacher? I truly pity her students, who are going to find it very difficult to figure out the real world.

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    Penny Hernandez (@NanaLenore)

    June 26, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    Perhaps Texas should mandate a course called “Creation Myths From Around the World” and include a LOT of various creation myths, including both of them (admittedly similar) featured in Genesis in the Judeo-Christian Bible.

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    June 26, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    Einstein didn’t even believe in your sky fairy, never mind creationism.

    As has been noted below your “quote” is a lie.

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    Dotti Roe

    June 28, 2013 at 1:42 am

    Thank you! You are right on the mark John.

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    Dotti Roe

    June 28, 2013 at 1:43 am

    Well said Andrew!

  46. Avatar

    Dotti Roe

    June 28, 2013 at 1:46 am

    LOL! Love your replies to this uneducated talking primate!

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    Dotti Roe

    June 28, 2013 at 1:52 am

    LOVE it when someone actually knows what they are talking about! Well said!

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    July 8, 2013 at 4:38 am

    She’s wondering why publishers didn’t also include evidence-based supplemental materials on creationism? Like what, a video of a pastor preaching? Or how about just quotes from the Bible? Teaching all sides, my a**.

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    Mitchell Jerine

    July 18, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    Texas is the leading state for minimum wage jobs. With an educational system like that, it is quite understandable.

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    July 18, 2013 at 10:20 pm

    Einstein didnt know about genitics, genitics was the final nail, its over your wrong and this argument holds no weight.

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    July 21, 2013 at 7:45 pm

    creationism is christian crapola

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    July 22, 2013 at 3:47 am

    Uh, buck, the word is genetics, not “genitics.” Also, “its over your wrong” should be it’s over, you’re wrong. So, learn to speak and write English. By the way, Einstein and all other scientists knew a lot about genetics. Learn some of the history of science.

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    July 29, 2013 at 6:07 am

    Believe it or not, there are actually “schools” that teach that kind of creationist nonsense as fact. They are basically the Christian equivalent of madrasas. Want to bet that’s where she got her “degree” in biology? And if I had a nickel for every time I hear some knuckle-dragging, mouth-breathing, scientifically illiterate galoot misuse the word “theory”. I would die a very, very wealthy man.

  54. Avatar

    Jim Slaughter

    July 30, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    The level of stupidity, taught by fundamentalist religions, is astounding. Reagan started the ‘dumbing down of America’ and had great success. With the advent of the tea party and the loonie class egged on by Fox news and the hate speaking radical right wing bloviators like Limbaugh, Hannity, Beck, Levin, Jones, etc. etc. have succeeded in bringing out the totally STUPIFYING of America.

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    July 31, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    And, there are wars waged against people who were happy living their lives without listening to a scientist say they are the only answer to things….NEWSFLASH: until they can agree upon official time frames……Evolution will REMAIN as much nonsense as what you deem as nonsense.

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    Lois Skvarek

    August 5, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    Very good discussion. Sometimes I think Teas is looking through the wrong end of the telescope.

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    Lois Skvarek

    August 5, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    I am so sorry. I left the “x” out of “Texas”.

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    August 19, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    Creationism is not the only other side to evolution, though it is one side and simply acknowledging it is not the same as “forcing religion on people”. There are many holes in the theory of evolution, and it is not a fact that we all evolved from one single-celled organism, just because it is a widely accepted belief. As evolutionists often point out, there have been many widely held beliefs throughout history which are just plain wrong. Should we put religion in science class? No. But neither should the humanist agenda be pushed by convincing people we know the truth about origins when we don’t. And there is a reason that we have metaphysics and quantum theory- because there are things which do not fall within the scope of understanding of contemporary science.

  59. Avatar


    August 19, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    No, it isn’t. Creationism is full of people who doubt religion as much as they doubt (controlled) science, by acknowledging that both have an agenda and both have usefulness. Creationism recognizes that there is an unexplainable order to our universe which seems to indicate intelligent design. Creationism does not favor any religion, but rather the idea that there is a power encompassing our universe that we can’t comprehend. It is really no different than what you hear in quantum or string theory- you say singularity, we say God.

  60. Avatar


    August 19, 2013 at 11:37 pm

    There is NO “other” side to evolution. Evolution is not a “belief”; it is a SCIENTIFIC theory backed up with mountains of evidence. (Google “scientific theory”. I know it’s hard for the unwashed masses to wrap their heads around it, but it does *not* mean a “hunch”.) There is NO evidence that the earth is only 6000 years old.

    Lastly, there is no such thing as an “evolutionist”. The correct term is “scientist”.

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    August 19, 2013 at 11:40 pm

    What “official time frame” are you talking about? Are you living in a fantasy world? Smoking crack? The age of the earth has been established at 4.5 billion years. There is no evidence whatsoever to the contrary.

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    August 20, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    Peter, stay with it, man! Juan (and the other bizarre creationists) just can’t get science into their heads. Keep up the good work, Peter!

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    Timothy Tennis

    August 20, 2013 at 8:06 pm

    Where are the talking apes? Seriously..? We are not lucky that the sun was “randomly placed” because the chance that we could have evolved anywhere where these conditions arent met is pretty much 0%. Based on that last deduction, we are not lucky at all, in fact it is pretty much 100% probability that we would happen to be here. Your faulty logic assumes that we could have existed (yes i know you think you have a soul) somewhere else then died instantly because the conditions arent correct. AND what you are talking about in your last sentence isnt evolution at all evolution doesnt happen during the life of a specific creature… so something losing its wings is just that, something losing its wings for survival. Something being born without wings because it’s parents didnt have them and allowed them to live to reproductive age and generate offspring , thats evolution. Wanna see evolution? Put some antibiotics in a petri dish and watch the bacteria die (except a few!) Then grab some of those bacteria and throw them on another petri dish with the same antibiotic.. they have evolved antibiotic resistance.

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    John Genryu

    August 25, 2013 at 10:23 pm

    Your post was so ignorant as to be embarrassing to read. Do you not understand the difference between facts and mythology?

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    John Genryu

    August 25, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    Einsteing by the way did not say that and you also showed that you have absolutely no understanding of what the term theory means in science. Gravity is a theory too. Try and disprove that by jumping out of a high window and seeing if you can fly. Try not to be so astoundingly moronic.

  66. Avatar

    John Genryu

    August 25, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    “I want my children to learn the spiritual truth of the world and right now they are being indoctrinated with all the science surrounding climate change. I want a different theory espoused, one that says that climate change is just a theory.” Please, please go and find out what the term theory means in science. It does not mean opinion. The thought of there being myths, taught as some sort of pseudo alternative to science is frankly horrifying.

  67. Avatar


    August 27, 2013 at 7:29 am

    I think this says it best:

    Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.’
    –Isaac Asimov

    That is exactly what creationism and so-called ‘intelligent design’ are: Pure ignorance, used to promote a religious agenda. Go to Answers in Genesis and see. They don’t have evidence for a young earth. They plainly admit that if one allows evolution, or even old-earth creationism (the idea that the earth was created, but that it happened millions or billions of years ago rather than just a few thousand years ago), their entire belief system collapses like a house of cards. To prevent that from happening, they push these ridiculous ideas and try to call them science.

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    Bill a geologist.

    September 5, 2013 at 11:11 pm

    Well said. The ‘creationists’ don’t seem to grasp the concept of PROOF, which evolution has in abundance. They also don’t care to separate Church from State, another basic constitutional concept. They keep saying we’re a ‘Christian Country’. From our inception, we carried out genocide on Native Americans. Remember the Indians??? Seen any lately? We were the last country in the world to abolish slavery? The South used the Bible to justify it. Creationism is just the same old nonsense packaged in a new form called “Intelligent Design”. Again… NO HARD PROOF… NO FACTS… NO SCIENCE. Texas and the Bible Belt is still in the Dark Ages (which the Church called its “Golden Era”) .

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    Juan Lopez

    September 16, 2013 at 9:06 am

    Again, creationism and religion are not the same thing. There is nothing wrong with offering *the other* popular theory that we were created. This doesn’t change how we do science, just how we interpret it. Shalom.

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    Juan Lopez

    September 16, 2013 at 9:09 am

    Evolution is a scientific THEORY.

    See what you did, I did. I do not believe God made Adam from the dust just because someone told me, (though I believe it is possible), and neither will I believe that we evolved from soup because someone told me. The “mountains” of evidence you speak of is really one kind of evidence: fossils, and these fossils can be interpreted many different ways. Radiocarbon dating is highly flawed, yet scientists continue to ignore this.

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    September 17, 2013 at 3:50 am

    Precisely. Evolution is a SCIENTIFIC theory. Before talking total nonsense, do yourself and the rest of the world a favor and google what a THEORY is in the context of science. It is not what you see in Sherlock Holmes novels. Not a hunch. Not a guess. A scientific THEORY becomes a THEORY when it is substantiated and repeatedly confirmed through observation and evidence.

    Evolution is a THEORY in the same way that gravitation is a THEORY, and general relativity is a THEORY. Are you creationists also going to say that gravitation is wrong, and that your magic sky being holds us all down on the earth at his pleasure? That’s just as possible as him creating Adam out of dust.

    There is NO “other” theory that we were created. There is the nonsense that is taught in the bible, and then there is science. There is NO evidence whatsoever for creationism. It is pure nonsense, based on a myth cribbed from earlier myths. Do you think the bible is the oldest creation myth? Far from it!

    As for your statement about radiocarbon dating, carbon-14 is only one radioisotope, and it is completely useless when dating fossils much more than 50,000 years old. Several other isotopes, all of which have different radioactive decay rates, are used to measure the age of rocks. These multiple pairs have been compared in rock samples from around the world, and they all come very close to each other in measuring the age of rock samples.

    There is also DNA, which has been seen to change over time, and can also be used to measure the time since species diverged. For example, DNA shows that humans and chimpanzees diverged from a common ancestor about 6 million years ago. This has NOTHING to do with radiocarbon dating.

    Then you can look up a the sky, and measure the red shift of the light from distant galaxies. These have established the age of the universe at 13.7 *billion* years. Again, nothing to do with radiocarbon dating.

    But please feel free to continue pushing your “other theories” creationist agenda, and dragging the greatest nation in the world further and further back into scientific and technical ignorance, while the rest of the world moves forward and leaves us in the dust.

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    Toby Nixon

    September 30, 2013 at 9:02 pm

    I remember being taught Creationist Theory, Even as a Child, I knew it was bullshit as soon as the teacher said. “Okay put away your Textbooks, I am going to show you how life was,created, did any of you bring your bible like I asked…” I was happily kicked out of class when I asked, “So, why does evolution make sense if God created all the Animals as we see them today? How did Noah get them all on the ark?”

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    October 14, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    There’s no *other* side to science in science courses. There’s only demonstrable evidence or not, period.

    We’ve got the fossils, they’ve got the tools.

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    Grantham West

    November 11, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    Sorry, but the late Albert Einstein said nothing of the sort. From, where are you pulling your information? Until Creationists and Intelligent Design people show facts (like paleontologists show the fossil record), neither have a leg to stand on.

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    November 12, 2013 at 7:32 pm

    Even by Darwin’s own explanation there are weaknesses in evolution Darwin expected the explosion of complex life in the Cambrian period to be explained by fossils which should show a gradual build-up to the more complex animals. Those fossils haven’t been found. There are fossils of very simple life and then an explosion of complex life.

    Evolution also has a hard time explaining complex body parts which have several independent parts that by themselves do nothing meaningful but when combined with other parts fulfill a meaningful function.

    Evolution has, however, been very good at explaining relatively small changes brought about by genetic defects which prove to be advantageous for survival.

    This is far from a settled science.

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    November 13, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    There is not PROOF of evolution. Seems very reasonable though and it seems to explain a lot of things. That, however, is not proof. A similar example that now seems to be fundamentally false is Newton’s Laws of Physics. For over 200 years they seemed to be true. Slowly a few things seemed to be unexplainable using his laws, but generally they explained most things. Then Einstein came along. He shook the foundation of Newtonian Physics. For everyday things Newton is close enough, but for large masses and relatively great speeds his ideas don’t match the measured results. The point is that a little over a hundred years ago most people would say that Newton’s Law’s were fact. They weren’t. That’s not how science works. Evolution is not fact!

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    November 14, 2013 at 12:07 am

    Science is rarely settled. If it were settled, we would not need to educate any new biologists. That does not change the fact that creationism, by any name, is, and always will be, utter nonsense, with absolutely no place in the science classroom.

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    November 14, 2013 at 12:12 am

    If I had a nickel for every mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging, scientifically illiterate cretin who says “only a theory” without having the slightest inkling of the kind of rigor that constitutes a *scientific theory*, I would die a very, very wealthy man.

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    November 15, 2013 at 6:01 am

    Please beat your head in with a baseball bat until you become a complete vegetable.

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    November 15, 2013 at 6:05 am

    It’s very fucking simple. Keep your poisonous Bronze age voodoo fairy tales OUT of the classroom & keep them in the church where they belong, jackass!

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    November 15, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    Charles Darwin wisely noted more than a century and a half ago that “ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.” I think this applies to some of the very confident statements of what is “truth” made on this blog.

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    November 17, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Witty and wonderful reply!

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    November 24, 2013 at 7:41 am

    All you need do is ask them if they are ok with OTHER sides to evolution… You know, islamic, wicca, native american (ALL OF EM), etc…

    Watch em fall over themselves stuttering about how those aren’t ok things to discuss in class… Then ask em “so what makes yours ok?”

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    November 24, 2013 at 8:09 pm

    To those who ask the question, “If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?”, I ask the question, if God made man from dust, why is there still dust?

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    November 24, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    I know it’s hard to take seriously any comment that starts out “I’m a wiccan” and continues with the phrase “just a theory”, but it was actually a parody intended to point out the utter nonsense of creationism.

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    November 24, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    Not so many years ago we thought disease was caused by gasses or witchcraft. Then we had germ theory. Over time we learned the difference between viruses and bacteria. Now we are learning the genetic makeup of them which is leading to new advances in our potential to heal people. At every step of the way, including now, we did not know everything. There was uncertainty but so what? We assume there is always more to learn. If we started finding things that contradicted the theory of evolution we would change but it is verified in new ways almost daily in many fields. It can be directly observed. There is no evidence whatsoever for the biblical account. That is why the links do not lead to evidence supporting the biblical account. There is nothing to link to. It is sad that so many people have not learned enough to tell the difference between imagination and observation.

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    November 26, 2013 at 12:47 am

    There are plenty of unanswered questions with evolution (see some earlier comments). No one knows the answers and anyone who thinks that beliefs other than evolution are idiotic is stepping beyond what is known

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    November 26, 2013 at 1:04 am

    It is clear that our schools need to do a better job of teaching critical thinking, to give students the ability to discern the difference between real science and utter nonsense. Even more so, they have to teach the meaning of the word “theory”, so that we never have to hear the phrase “only a theory” ever again.

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    November 26, 2013 at 2:19 am

    You’re smarter than I am to reach those conclusions. In reading The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief by Francis S. Collins I learned that the author was raised as an atheist and after being the head of the human genome project he realized that what he saw could not be entirely explained by evolution. He came to believe that there had to be some intelligence behind the design. Once that conclusion is reached the idea of God readily follows. I don’t know His role but I certainly believe that there’s a good chance that a power and intelligence that we don’t know much about was involved.

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    November 26, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    It does not advance the progress of knowledge to say, “I don’t understand it, therefore it must be god.” It just shows a lack of intellectual curiosity.

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    November 27, 2013 at 4:43 am

    No one denies that there are unanswered questions in evolution. That’s why scientists are continuing to study it, in order to find answers to those questions, instead of abandoning it in favor of fairy tales.

    Any scientist who claims to have all of the answers is a charlatan. So is anyone who says that all of the answers are in one book, regardless of whether that book is the bible, the koran, the Origin of Species, or the Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy.

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    Eric Lilly

    December 14, 2013 at 2:08 am

    Why on earth do people not understand that Evolution is not trying to explain the origin of life? I think these zealots should stick to arguing against the Big Bang theory instead.

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    servin777Dr. Stephen Ervin

    December 17, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Actually not true…since Darwin’s time we have discovered a myriad of pre-cambrian organisms, both single celled and colonial. Get over it people…creationism is fantasy and evolution is FACT.

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    December 18, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    Peter, stay with it. Your post is one of the best, most concise, most logical, and most understandable of all the posts concerning evolution, DNA, radiocarbon (and other) dating, and what a scientific theory is. Excellent stuff! I don’t know what to do with the God people, the creationists, the “Intelligent” Design fools. I guess we have to keep trying. How did this happen? I love science. I love learning about the way the world (the universe) works. It is so much more interesting than blind faith in useless mythology.

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    Skip Moreland

    December 24, 2013 at 8:54 am

    Actually the human form and other life forms are not perfect in any way. Structurally we are not sound, which is why humans break down very easily. You should study anatomy, or an engineer. The body is flawed and if we were to make a perfect human, we’d be built far sturdier.
    One example, we use the same tube to eat and breath with, with choking being very common because of this. Too many teeth because our jaw is shorter than our ancestors. Our eyes are wired backwards which leads to a blind spot in the center of our vision. An appendix which has no use anymore and can cause severe illness or death. And I haven’t even gotten down to DNA and it’s many flaws in our genetic code. These are just a few examples of how we are not perfect.

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    January 2, 2014 at 7:12 am

    As we know, Peter, humans did not evolve from monkeys, but apes, though apes and monkeys had a common ancestor themselves.

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    January 2, 2014 at 7:16 am

    I wonder which creation myth Ms. Cargill would accept, and how the teaching any of them as “alternative scientific theory” would not breach the 1st Amendment: “And Congress shall pass no law respecting the establishment of a religion ….” Or would she abolish the 1st Amendment, so that the only freedoms honored are her own and those who think (well, you know what I mean) like her?

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    January 6, 2014 at 7:01 am

    You’re asking them to think or to read something besides the bible. The Big Bang, abiogenesis, and natural selection all get lumped together in their tiny brains under the rubric of ‘evolution’.

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    January 6, 2014 at 7:04 am

    Correct, but they have trouble making the distinction; hence the Scopes ‘Monkey’ Trial.

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    David Jarvis

    January 9, 2014 at 4:46 pm

    How come this lady didn’t point out she couldn’t find another side to the theory of gravity, or germ disease, or special relativity – or any other theory – other the theory that seems to conflict with her beliefs?

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    Steve Kimball

    January 17, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    intelligent design doesnt have to mean it was her or anyone else’s God. it could very well mean design by superior beings as in aliens. wonder if she wants that theory in text books.

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    January 24, 2014 at 7:33 pm

    Consider the various Christian funeral rites, where it’s typically recited “ashes to ashes, dust to dust”. Perhaps dust is exactly that. It’s everywhere, we are obsessed with getting rid of it, and yet perhaps all we are doing is spreading the next generation of “creation” and evolution with our Swiffers!

    This has been a great read/thread. A lot of dialog on how things came to be, yet no mention of the various alternate universes that exist out there – Nirvana, Heaven, Krishna, etc. when we matriculate from our organic essence (die). That’s the one that fascinates me more. Do we just play checkers and fish for eternity, with all of our long deceased pets at our side? Where, really, are these places?

    I’m actually a Catholic – for my own reasons. Solace perhaps. Be a good person, bring care to the poor, in being and spirit and in deeds. Good language and principles. Good philosophical foundation. Adam’s Rib? Naw! Not good enough for me.

    Theory is exactly that – theory. Scientific principles, and the method, should apply to everything – postulate an idea, do the research, predict an outcome, test it, observe the result – return to the idea and refine it, repeat. Aristotle should have been canonized as a saint (oops, in my religion!).

    That premise is what belongs in every text being taught. Mathematics is based on “theorems” and “proofs”. Philosophy asks us to challenge our ingrained beliefs in order to become more enlightened and tolerant. History is yet another story to be told, based on more of the scientific method of discovery and inquiry.

    Good luck Texas. You’ve always wanted to secede and this may be your biggest opportunity. Many may flock to your “promised land”, but don’t hawk on or try to control publishers who prepare and deliver instructional content to young minds everywhere, or at least in this country. Remember, our land is full of inquiring minds that now come from all over the globe to be educated in the land of the free. Enhance both your science curriculums and your civics/philosophy curriculums, and be selective where you try to introduce fact or theory over enlightment and well documented fantasies.

    I like being a talking ape. And I just might consider leaving my house dusty from now on – call it an ongoing family reunion.

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    March 16, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    Very nicely stated (except for amino acids comprising DNA)! However, engaging in a dialectic with heathen theists is akin to pi$$ing into the wind or shoveling smoke!

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    March 16, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    There is NO evidence of creation or a creator other than man-created tales (of which there are thousands; what does one believe based on word of mouth?). New EVIDENCE (google Jeremy England – Statistical physics of self-replication) suggests the evolution of life might be the inevitable outcome of matter organizing to increase entropy, which seems counter-intuitive but actually makes perfect sense. Teach my kids that kind of SCIENCE, not not the kind in which ancient goat herders, rice growers, or plains hunters believed. Teach those things in religion or anthropology classes.

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    March 16, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    Change to “suggests abiogenesis and the evolution of life might be…”

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    April 7, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    Tom : You can’t be serious ! Haven’t you read the last 150 years of scientific research that has documented every point in your comment? Haven’t you seen pictures of the 360,000 fossils that you claim “haven’t been found”? Haven’t you watched the 5 or 6 hundred youtube videos that show how those “do nothing meaningful” body parts have very functional uses? Stop using creationist websites as your only source of information and join the 21st century.

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    April 18, 2014 at 8:01 am

    Or imagine if the creationists are right, and the earth was created 6000 years ago, but it’s just that God prefers to go by the name “Allah”, or even “Zeus”. It could happen!

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    April 19, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    We ( the voters ) really need to find a way to keep stupid people, or religious fanatics, out of our education system: and out of our government. Whatever they want to do in church, or at home , is none of my business: but when they want to spread their dumbing-down virus to everyone else, it’s time to get that anti-stupid vaccine shot.

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    June 19, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    Evolution is nonsense? REALLY? So a big man up in the sky made the earth in 6 days is cutting edge science then? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA!!!!!

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